Tornadoes Hit Northwest Ohio

Teresa Bailey, Women's Missions and Ministries, Northwest Ohio Baptist Association
July 2010

   On June 5, 2010, our lives changed as Northwest Ohio was hit by tornadoes destroying homes, buildings and lives. Now when we hear the word “tornado” we wonder if that experience will happen again, and it could.

   Thankfully, Southern Baptists stepped up and went to work assisting in the recovery process. Fourteen men and women from all over Ohio, (Akron, Columbus, Dayton, Hamilton and Sidney) who are part of the Disaster Relief Chainsaw Team, came to assist the areas affected by the tornadoes. One man was 82 years old! Retired persons and those taking vacation from work, helped from June 7-11.

   Lifespring, East Toledo Baptist, Northwood Baptist and First Baptist of Perrysburg as well as non-church members contributed food, water, shelter and monetary donations to assist the team. Each day the group was given a hot breakfast, sack lunch and a full course dinner along with housing and the availability of a shower trailer (thanks to the West Central Baptist Association).

   One of the places the Disaster Relief team worked was on a farm located outside Millbury, home to a 70 year old woman. She waited out the storm inside her home as the winds moved her house more than 500 feet from its foundation. She survived with only cuts and bruises. Another person, surviving from the second floor, had to undergo eye surgery, but full recovery is expected. Plans are to re-build on the same site. The team cut down twisted and destroyed trees for several days. What remains is one lone stripped tree and a mangled barn. The team had an opportunity to share why they came and who they represented with her family members.

   Another day was spent in Delta, at the Shiloh Christian Church taking down 18 pine trees, which were destroyed, on the church property. Additional time was spent driving around looking to lend a hand wherever help was needed.

   We have seen Southern Baptists and Cooperative Program dollars come together to help those in need in Northwest, Ohio.

   As I toured the Millbury area recently, it was evident that the recovery would be long. Not much has changed since the days following the tornado, but communities were helped because of Southern Baptists. Your response was quick!

   Please consider becoming a Disaster Relief team member. There are food service, mud-out, childcare and chainsaw training sessions annually. Contact Sam Kelley at the State Convention of Baptists in Ohio for more information.

   Also, please keep the families affected by this in your prayers. God is at work!